A gunman shot two sisters and another man to death in a Central Maine apartment building, leaving a young girl unharmed on the first floor before turning the weapon on himself, authorities said Thursday afternoon.
Department of Public Safety spokesman Steve McCausland told reporters one of the victims had called 911 before she died Wednesday night, providing police with valuable information.
Authorities said Michael Muzerolle, 29, who was killed by the shooter, was the father of the girl and a nephew of Oakland Police Chief Michael Tracy.
Investigators have not discerned a motive in the shooting, which took place at around 8 p.m. Wednesday.
“At this point, we do not have answers,” McCausland said, “but we are going to work very hard to get them.”
Police identified the women killed in the shooting as 30-year-old Amanda Bragg and 28-year-old Amy Derosby. Derosby had called police from inside, McCausland said.
The gunman, identified as 42-year-old Herman Derico, was found on the driveway with a 9 millimeter handgun next to him.
They all shared the brown clapboard home, which was divided into two apartments, McCausland said. All three victims’ bodies were found on the first floor. That’s also where police found the 4-year-old girl, who was the daughter of Bragg and Muzerrole. The girl is staying with her grandmother — the mother of the two women who died.
Tracy said Thursday afternoon that he was coping privately with the loss of his nephew Muzerolle, whom he described as “a wonderful person.”
“It’s a heavy impact on our community,” Tracy said of the shooting. “It is a quiet place. It’s a neighborhood. Everybody knows everybody and it’s a traedy.
Jason Thomas, a next-door neighbor, said he heard two gunshots and called 911. He then heard a man yell, ‘‘I told you this was going to happen!’’ He said he then heard a woman pleading, ‘‘Please don’t, please don’t.
Then he heard two more shots and police arrived. At some point, he called Bragg. She answered.
‘‘I said, ‘Are you OK?’ She said: ‘No, I can’t move. Can you please help me?’’’ Thomas said.
Chris Perry, another neighbor who heard the shots as he was pulling into his driveway, said Muzerolle recently helped him put up a weather vane on his house.
‘‘I just feel bad about them,’’ he said. ‘‘I feel bad for the little girl, she’s a cute little girl.’’